New York Eviction Process

New York Eviction Process

Last Updated: September 13, 2022 by Elizabeth Souza

Steps of the eviction process in New York:

  1. Landlord serves tenant written notice.
  2. Landlord files complaint with court (if unresolved).
  3. Court holds hearing and issues judgment.
  4. Writ of execution is posted.
  5. Possession of property is returned to landlord.

Evicting a tenant in New York can take around one to five months depending on the reason for the eviction. If tenants request an adjournment, the process can take longer.

Questions? To chat with a New York eviction attorney, click here

Grounds for an Eviction in New York

In New York, a landlord cannot legally evict a tenant without cause. Legal grounds to evict include not paying rent on time, staying after the lease ends, violating lease terms or illegal activity. Even so, proper notice must first be given before ending the tenancy.

Grounds Notice Period Curable?
Nonpayment of Rent 14 Days Yes
End of / No Lease 30 Days No
Lease Violation 10/30 Days Yes
Illegal Activity None No

Eviction for Nonpayment of Rent

In New York, a landlord can evict a tenant for not paying rent on time. To do so, they must first give 14 days’  notice to pay rent or vacate the premises. If the tenant does neither after that time, the landlord can move forward and file an eviction lawsuit.

Unless the lease states otherwise, rent is due at the beginning of each pay period and is considered late in New York if it is not received within 5 days of the due date. So for example, if rent is due on the first of the month, it is considered late starting on the sixth of the month (if not paid in full). New York has a statewide grace period of 5 days, this does not include weekends and state and federal holidays.

Once rent is considered late, the landlord can begin the eviction process by serving the tenant with proper notice.

Eviction for No Lease or End of Lease

In New York, a landlord can evict a tenant without a lease or with a lease that has ended (known as a “holdover tenant” or “tenant at will”). To do so, they must first terminate the tenancy by giving proper notice to move out (30 days for tenants that pay month-to-month, if the tenancy is less than one year).

Once the tenancy ends, if the tenant remains on the property, the landlord can move forward and file an eviction lawsuit.

Eviction for Violation of Lease or Responsibilities

In New York, a landlord can evict a tenant for violating the terms of their lease or not upholding their responsibilities under New York landlord-tenant law.  To do so, the landlord must give 10 days’ notice to fix the issue or move out.  For all lease violations, a tenant has the opportunity to correct the issue to avoid eviction.

If the issue is not fixed within the 10-day notice period, the landlord must give a 30 days’ notice to vacate the premises without a chance to fix the issue.

Tenant responsibilities include:

  • Keeping the unit clean and free from trash.
  • Making small repairs and maintenance.
  • Informing landlord of any repair or maintenance issue.
  • Keeping fixtures clean and sanitary.
  • Not disturbing other tenants or neighbors.

Examples of lease violations include:

  • Having an unauthorized pet or guest.
  • Parking in an unauthorized area.
  • Not maintaining a certain level of cleanliness.

Eviction for Illegal Activity

In New York, a landlord can evict a tenant for an illegal activity. No prior notice is required, and the landlord can file an eviction lawsuit immediately. Tenants are not given the option to fix the issue and must vacate.

In New York, illegal activity includes:

  • Prostitution.
  • Used rental unit as a bawdy house.
  • Illegal trade or manufacture of an illegal business.

The landlord may proceed with the eviction process immediately.

warning

Illegal Evictions in New York

In New York, any of the below is illegal.

“Self-Help” Evictions

If a tenant has lived in the dwelling unit for 30 consecutive days (with or without a lease), a landlord is not allowed to forcibly remove a tenant by:

  • Changing the locks.
  • Padlocking the doors.
  • Shutting off utilities.
  • Removing tenant belongings.
  • Removing the door to the dwelling unit.

New York’s Housing Stability and Tenant Act of 2019 allowed new protections for tenants in terms of unlawful evictions. It is a Class A misdemeanor if a landlord (or any person) evicts a tenant from the rental unit without a court order. If a landlord is found liable, they could be required to pay the tenant a civil penalty not less than $1,000 and not more than $10,000 per violation.

Retaliatory Evictions

It is illegal for a landlord to evict a tenant in response to exercising a legally protected right. These rights include:

  • Complaining about health and safety issues to the landlord or any authority tasked to enforce the law.
  • Pursuing a legal right under the lease agreement, including a legal right to remedy or repair habitability issues.
  • Joining a tenant’s union or organization.

If a landlord is found liable for a retaliatory eviction, they could be required to pay the tenant damages sustained, attorney’s fees, and other appropriate relief, including injunctive and other equitable remedies.

Eviction notice posted on iPropertyManagement.com

Step 1: Landlord Serves Notice to Tenant

A landlord can begin the eviction process in New York by serving the tenant with written notice. The notice must be delivered by one of the following methods:

  • Delivering it to the tenant in person.
  • Leaving the notice with a “suitable” person at the rental unit.
  • Posting a copy in a conspicuous place on the rental unit.
  • Mailing the notice to the tenant via certified/registered mail AND regular mail (if left with another person/posted on the rental unit).

It is important for a landlord to always maintain a copy of the signed and served notice as proof of proper service of notice. 

14-Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit

If a tenant is late on paying rent (full or partial) in New York, the landlord can serve them a 14-Day Notice to Pay or Quit. This notice gives the tenant 14 calendar days to pay the entire remaining balance or vacate the premises.

30-Day Notice to Quit (No Lease/End of Lease)

For a tenant with no lease or a tenancy less than one year in New York, the landlord must serve them a 30-Day Notice to Quit to end the tenancy. This eviction notice allows the tenant 30 calendar days to move out.

For tenants that don’t pay monthly, the amount of notice differs:

Rent Payment Frequency Notice Amount
Tenancies Less Than 1-Year 30 Days
Tenancies More Than 1-Year, But Less Than 2 Years 60 Days
Tenancies More Than 2 Years 90 Days

10-Day Notice to Cure or Vacate

In New York, if a tenant commits a violation of the terms of their lease or legal responsibilities as a tenant, the landlord can serve them a 10-Day Notice to Cure or Vacate. This eviction notice gives the tenant 10 calendar days to fix the issue or move out.

30-Day Notice to Quit

In New York if a tenant does not fix the lease violation after a 10-Day Notice to Cure or Vacate was provided, the landlord must serve them a second and final notice, 30-Day Notice to Quit. This eviction notice gives the tenant 30 calendar days to move out without the chance to fix the issue.

Questions? To chat with a New York eviction attorney, click here

Eviction Complaint Filed on iPropertyManagement.com

Step 2: Landlord Files Lawsuit with Court

As the next step in the eviction process, New York landlords must file a petition in the appropriate court. The eviction case shall be held in a court where the property is located.

For example, if the property is in Suffolk County in the town of Islip, Babylon, Huntington, Brookhaven or Smithtown, the case shall commence in the District Court in that town.

East Hampton, Southampton, Riverhead, Southold or Shelter Island properties landlords should bring the case to Justice Court. Properties located in Nassau County, the case is started in the District Court.

If the property is located in Glen Cove or Long Beach, you can start the case in City Court or the District Court.

The notice of petition and petition for eviction must be served on the tenant by anyone who is 18 years or older and is not part of the case 10-17 days prior to the hearing.

The petition for eviction and notice of petition may be served via one of the following methods:

  1. Giving them to the tenant in person any day except for Sundays or the tenant’s religious observance days;
  2. Leaving them with someone who lives or works at the rental unit AND copies are mailed via first class mail and certified mail; or
  3. Posting the petition and notice in a conspicuous place OR under the “entrance door” of the rental unit AND copies are mailed via first class and certified mail.

Clock   on iPropertyManagement.com10-17 days. The petition and notice of petition must be served on the tenant 10-17 days prior to the hearing date.

Eviction Court Hearing on iPropertyManagement.com

Step 3: Court Holds Hearing & Issues Judgment

The hearing date is set at the time the landlord files their petition for eviction with the court. The hearing must be held 10-17 days after the petition is served on the tenant.

A tenant will not have an opportunity prior to the hearing to respond to the eviction (except evictions for nonpayment of rent) and must appear if they want to explain why they feel they should not be evicted.

Either party can request a 14 day adjournment (or otherwise known as a postponement to the court date).

If the tenant fails to appear for the hearing, the judge may make a ruling on the eviction that day.

NOTES
  • Evictions for nonpayment of rent. The tenant must respond to the petition within 10 days. A hearing will be set for 3-8 days after the response is received by the court. If there’s no response, the court may rule for the landlord. However, a tenant can pay rent in full any time prior to a hearing and the eviction will be stopped.
  • All other eviction types. If a tenant wants to contest (fight) the hearing, they must bring any documentation to the hearing that’s already scheduled, which is when the tenant can present reasons for why they shouldn’t be evicted, or for why there shouldn’t be a hearing in the first place.

If the judge rules in favor of the landlord, a writ of execution will be issued, and the eviction process will continue.

Clock   on iPropertyManagement.com 10-17 days. The hearing must be held 10-17 days after the petition is served on the tenant.

Eviction Writ of Execution on iPropertyManagement.com

Step 4: Writ of Execution Is Issued

The writ of execution is the tenant’s final notice to leave the rental unit and gives them the opportunity to remove their belongings before they are forcibly removed from the rental unit.

If the court has ruled in the landlord’s favor, the landlord will ask the court to issue a writ of execution. This can be done at the hearing.

Clock   on iPropertyManagement.comA few hours to a few days. The landlord must request the writ of execution, but it can be issued the same day as the hearing.

Eviction property possession returned on iPropertyManagement.com

Step 5: Possession of Property is Returned

Tenants have 14 days after receiving the writ of execution to move out before they are forcibly removed from the rental unit by a marshal, sheriff or constable unless the eviction is for nonpayment of rent, in which case the tenant will only have ten days to move out.

If the tenant is being evicted for nonpayment of rent and pays the rent amount in full prior to the end of 14th day, the eviction process will be stopped, and the tenant will be allowed to remain in the rental unit.

There are a few circumstances in which the court may grant a stay of execution, and allow the tenant more time in the rental unit before having to move out (but the tenant will still have to move out once the stay period expires):

  • Extreme Hardship – This could include things like “serious ill health,” changing the school a child is enrolled in, and other family hardships a move would cause. The stay can be no longer than one year. 
  • To Cure a Breach – If the eviction was for violation of the lease; the stay can be no longer than 30 days.  If, at the end of the 30-day stay, the breach has been corrected, the tenant may remain in the rental unit and will not be evicted.

Clock   on iPropertyManagement.com14 days. The tenant has 14 days once the writ of execution has been issued, unless the judicial officer grants a stay.

Questions? To chat with a New York eviction attorney, click here

New York Eviction Process Timeline

In New York, an eviction can be completed in 1 to 5 months but can take longer depending on the reason for eviction, whether the eviction is contested, which days courts are (or aren’t) in session and other various possible delays.

Below are the parts of the New York eviction process outside the control of landlords for cases that go uncontested.

Step Estimated Time
Initial Notice Period 14-90 Calendar Days
Court Issuing/Serving Summons 10-17 Business Days
Tenant Response Period ~10 Business Days
Court Ruling 10-17 Business Days
Court Serving Writ of Execution 1-3 Business Days
Final Notice Period ~14 Days

Flowchart of New York Eviction Process

New York Eviction Process Flowchart on iPropertyManagement.com

For additional questions about the eviction process in New York, please refer to the official state legislation, NY Real Prop Actions L §701-768 and NY Real Prop L §220-238-A, for more information.

Sources